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How to choose the best online platform

Event Tips Events

By techweek Techweek

3 May 2021

zoom meeting 950x500

 

So you’ve selected a venue for your Techweek2021 event, but now you need to choose your online platform.

In the wake of 2020, digital events have quickly become an essential part of the event planners toolkit.  Now, any in-person event is likely to have a virtual contingency plan or offer a live-stream to those who can’t attend.

Before deciding which platform to use, consider your budget, support, the platform’s features (including recording, survey capabilities, creative interaction and number of attendees) and weigh up the pros and cons of each.

Once you’ve selected your platform, do a dry run and test every feature you want to use during your event. Check the sound, video quality and your background.

Zoom

Zoom was last year’s success story with its dramatic uptake during the pandemic that saw the world stay home enmasse.  It quickly became the go-to platform, allowing large groups of people to participate in video meetings.  The free version offers meeting times limited to 40 minutes and the entry level paid version has unlimited meeting time with up to 100 participants.  Zoom also offers webinars (a paid subscription is required). 

Zoom is user friendly, reliable and attendees can participate without having to have an individual account.  Meetings can be accessed online, via the Zoom app or by dialling in using a smartphone.

GoTo Meeting and Webinars

GoToMeeting and GoToWebinar was established over 15 years ago using remote access and screen sharing technology.
GoToMeetings facilitates video conferencing while GoToWebinars allows you to host presentations to groups of people.  You can register for a free 14-day trial, however after that you will need a paid subscription to continue using the service.Check out these other platforms:

Adobe Connect offers virtual classrooms as well as video conferencing and webinars.

BlueJeans is a video conferencing and large events platform for remote workforces.

Crowdcast is a video platform for interactive live conversations.

Google Hangouts enables people to connect with each other through group video calls.

Google Hangouts Meet is a version of Google Hangouts targeted at enterprise for video conferencing. 

Hopin is a startup platform designed to run events online, rather than just the standard meeting or webinar format, which allows attendees to do things such as network one-on-one and join roundtable discussions.

Microsoft Teams is a communications and collaboration platform which uses Office 365.

ON24 is an enterprise level platform that lets you create, market and host online experiences.

Vimeo is a platform that can be used to live stream events.

Webex is an enterprise solution for video conferencing and webinars. 

Tip: If you are unsure which platform will work best for your event, register for product demonstrations, free trials to find what suits. 

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